We rely on the ground. It is, pardon the wordplay, the bedrock of our civilization. We walk on it. We build on it. Without it, we'd have to figure out how to make floating cities either on the ocean or in the air.
Spring in Florida is upon us and with it brings the site of bright yellow flowers and trees! The showy tabebuia tree announces springtime in Florida, with varieties that flower in pink, lavender-pink, and its signature yellow. It's a time of renewal for nature and brings about new life to our lawns and gardens. We often use this time as our annual deep cleaning for our home before the rains of spring and summer come shortly after.
The U.S. Geological Survey estimates that 35 to 40% of all the land in the U.S. is susceptible to sinkholes. While giant sinkholes often make news, smaller sinkholes are also exceptionally costly to homeowners. In 2009, the average sinkhole claim cost Florida insurance companies over $86,000 for cracked driveways, walls, and foundations. In that year, insurance companies paid out over $97 million.
It's a nightmare scenario; you're at home—maybe even sound asleep in your bed—or perhaps just walking down the street, and all of a sudden, the ground beneath you literally opens up, swallowing homes, cars, trees and even people into a muddy, seemingly bottomless pit. If you're in California, you might attribute such a catastrophe to an earthquake, but in Florida, chances are you've just witnessed—or been the victim of—a sinkhole. Some regions of the country are prone to sinkholes because of their geologic makeup—and Florida is one such region. Believe it or not, sinkholes are more of an insurance risk in the Sunshine State than hurricanes. And Florida has more sinkholes than any other state in the nation.
There is nothing inherently wrong with buying a home with a repaired sinkhole. However, buying such a home does require a level of caution and diligence and requires various documentation. In fact, buying a home with a repaired sinkhole may turn out to be in your favor, as these homes can be more affordable than homes with no known sinkhole activity. Whenever you are buying a home in Florida, it is wise to examine the surrounding area as well.
Most of the scientific research on sinkholes has focused on areas where limestone, caves and natural springs create prime conditions for earthen collapses. Florida has the most.
A Pre-Construction helical pier is a type of structural pier, which is installed below the structure before it is built. The steel pier is tied into the footer of the structure to keep the structure from moving due to weak or compromised soils. Normally this consists of a type of multi lead helical pier that is driven with precision deep into the ground until it rests soundly upon the underlying load-bearing strata.
According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), 20% of the United States lies in areas susceptible to sinkhole events.